3 PAP lawmakers debate Chen’s Tang analogy

Dear MPs,

I refer to the 20 Oct 2011 Straits Times report of your comments in parliament.

Dear Ms Ellen Lee,

You said Mr Chen’s analogy doesn’t hold water because Emperor Tai Zong was an autocratic ruler whereas we are a modern, democratic society where anyone has the right to speak. You didn’t get the analogy’s message right. The message is not about having the right to speak. It is about having the leader listen to what we have to say. Our right to speak doesn’t guarantee that we will be heard. The Emperor Tai Zong analogy is spot on because it is asking our democratic ruler today to listen to what the people has to say, just as Emperor Tai Zong listened to what his faithful counsellor Wei Zheng had to say.

Dear Mr Sam Tan,

You cited Mr Tharman Shanmugaratnam and Dr Vivian Balakrishnan who were once active critics of the government as proof that the PAP is a broad church that accepts a variety of views in its ranks. However, Mr Tharman and Dr Balakrishnan no longer are active critics of the government. Therefore, they no longer represent the variety of views found in a broad church.

You said being in the government is not about speaking many empty words but serving the masses. You should tell that to our ministers. We don’t want to hear many empty words. We want them to serve the masses and not serve themselves with high salaries.


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